Genotype vs. Phenotype

The genotype of an organism is the genetic code in its cells. This genetic constitution of an individual influences – but is not solely responsible for – many of its traits. The phenotype is the visible or expressed trait, such as hair color. The phenotype depends upon the genotype but can also be influenced by environmental factors.

Comparison chart

Edit this comparison chart

Genotype

Phenotype

Examples DNA, susceptibility to diseases Hair color, eye color, weight, the ability to roll one's tongue
Refers to The information contained on two alleles in the cell. An expressed and observable trait (you can see it), e.g. hair color.
Depends upon The hereditary information that was given to an individual by their parents. Genotype and the influence of the environment.
Inheritance Partly inherited by offspring, as one of the two alleles is passed on during reproduction. Cannot be inherited.
Contains All the hereditary information of an individual, even if those genes are not expressed. Expressed genes only.
Can be determined by Genotyping – using a biological assay, such as PCR, to find out what genes are on an allele. (Inside the body) Observation of the individual. (Outside the body)

Contents: Genotype vs Phenotype

Examples of Gene Silencing in Transgenic Plants like petunia.
Examples of Gene Silencing in Transgenic Plants like petunia.

edit Meaning

Genotype refers to the genetic makeup of a cell. For each individual trait (such as hair or eye color), a cell contains instructions on two alleles, which are alternative forms of the gene obtained from the mother and the father. An individual’s genotype refers to the combination of these two alleles, and can be either homozygous (the alleles are the same) or heterozygous (the alleles are different).

Phenotype refers to a trait that can be observed, such as morphology or behavior.

edit Video explaining the differences

This video compares genotype vs. phenotype and further explains how the changes in genotype of an individual can affect it's phenotype.

edit Determination

The genotype can be determined through genotyping – the use of a biological assay to find out what genes are on each allele.

The phenotype can be determined by observing the individual.

edit Information Included

An individual’s genotype includes their full hereditary information, even if it is not expressed. This information is determined by the genes passed on by the parents at conception.

An individual’s phenotype only includes expressed genes. For example, if an individual has one “brown hair” allele and one “blonde hair” allele, and they have brown hair, their phenotype only includes the expressed gene: brown hair. An individual’s phenotype can change during their lifetime, depending on which genes are expressed and how the environment affects them. For example, a young child with blonde hair can grow up to be a brunette.

edit Inheritance

The causal pathway of inheritance means that genomes are passed from generation to generation without being influenced or changed by the environment. A sexually reproducing organism receives two alleles at conception, making their genotype. When they reproduce, they pass an identical copy of one of these alleles to their offspring.

As phenotypes are influenced by environmental factors, however, they cannot be directly inherited. They are only found in the next generation if the right combination of genotype and environmental factors occurred again, and just as many different genotypes can produce the same phenotype, many different phenotypes can arise from the same genotype. Thus although identical twins have the same genotype, they can have different phenotypes.

edit References

Share this comparison:

If you read this far, you should follow us on:

"Genotype vs Phenotype." Diffen.com. Diffen LLC, n.d. Web. 22 Sep 2014. < http://www.diffen.com/difference/Genotype_vs_Phenotype >

Stay informed Related Comparisons
Follow Diffen
Make Diffen Smarter.

Log in to edit comparisons or create new comparisons in your area of expertise!

Sign up »
Top 5 Comparisons Recently Compared

Comments: Genotype vs Phenotype

Comments via Facebook

Anonymous comments (1)

February 26, 2013, 2:32am

hey, can you guys add the format of a genotype and phenotype:
genotype- Bb:bb
phenotype- brown:blue
....and what is a phenotypic ratio?

— 24.✗.✗.123
0

share

Up next

DNA vs. RNA